Deconstructing the Hot Toy Lists; Mattel is a Winner

We should anticipate a big year from Mattel as, between the two chains, they listed almost twice as many items as their chief competitor, Hasbro, and four more than Spin Master.


Target and Wal-Mart have released their 2019 hot toy lists. As I did last year, to better understand toy industry dynamics for the coming holiday season., I reverse engineered both lists.  You can find the two listings with current retails at the end of this article.

Wal-Mart stretches the meaning of toy

Wal-Mart included eight adult products in its list of hot toys, thus expanding the notion of who wants to play to include tweens, teens, and adults. The Wal-Mart list consists of serious, adult-oriented products like a  HP Gaming Laptop ($749.99), a set of Razer Kraken Head Phones ($59.99), a Hover-1 Maverick Hoverboard ($114.00), a Razer Cynosa Keyboard ($35.95), a Microsoft X-Box 1 ($299.99), a Nintendo Switch ($294.49), a Hover-1 All-Star Go Kart Combo ($198.00), and a  Hover-1 Electric Folding Scooter ($148.00).

Target stayed primarily with its child consumer base and targeted adults with only three products: A $299 scooter, a $299 Nintendo Switch, and a $149 hoverboard).

I like what Wal-Mart is doing as it not only expands the marketplace for toys, but it increases the price points, both of which should result in higher gross revenues for the retailer.

This year's market basket price is higher

Last year I calculated the market basket price for the Wal-Mart and Target hot toy lists. In doing so, I wanted to see what the average price was if one were to purchase all of the items featured. As can be seen below, the average price for both lists has increased. I think this shows two things: Both retailers are betting on a good Christmas, and both think the consumers are willing to pay more for play.

                        2018                2019

Wal-Mart         $77.90               $82.50

Target              $65.43               $72.96

The year's lists are more differentiated

I found it interesting that this year's lists contained only two items that showed up on both lists: The Nintendo Switch and Spin Master's Owleez. It appears both chains steered well around the other's choices.

Mattel dominates the listings

We should anticipate a big year from Mattel as, between the two chains, they listed almost twice as many items as their chief competitor, Hasbro, and four more than Spin Master. I was surprised that Lego had no listings. Here is a list of the companies listed and the breakout by retailer:

MATTEL 13 (8 Target 5 /  Walmart)

SPIN MASTER 9 (5 Walmart /  4 Target)

Hasbro 7 (5 Walmart. /  2 Target)

MGA 7  (7 Walmart)

JAKKS 3 (3 Walmart)

HOVER 1 3 (3 Walmart)

MOOSE 6 (4 Walmart  / 2 Target)


DYNACRAFT 2 (2 Walmart)

JAZWARES 2 (1 Walmart / 1Target)

JUST PLAY 2 (1Walmart / 1 Target)

NINTENDO 2 (Walmart / Target)

RAZER 2 (2 Walmart)

VTECH 2 (2 Walmart)

The following companies had 1 each:

Animal Planet (Target)

Blip Toys (Walmart)

Buffalo Games (Target)

Build-A-Bear (Walmart)

Capsule Chix (Walmart)

Cry Babies (Walmart)

Goliath (Walmart)

Hewlitt Packard (Walmart)

Jets On (Target)

Microsoft (Walmart)

Monster Jam (Walmart)

Our Generation (Target)

Poopsie Slime Surprise!  (Target)

Ryans World (Target)

Skyrocket (Walmart)

Snapstar (Target)

Viro Rides (Target)

Wicked Cool Toys (Walmart)

Wow Stuff! (Walmart)


WALMART Adventure Force V-Twin Gatling Belt Dart Blaster ADVENTURE FORCE $29.97
WALMART Nascar Adventure Force Crash Racers ADVENTURE FORCE $29.97
WALMART Build-A-Bear Stuffing Station BUILD A BEAR $25.00
WALMART Realtree 24 Volt UTV ride On DYNACRAFT $398.00
WALMART Simba 6 Volt Cub Plush Ride-on DYNACRAFT $149.99
WALMART Banana Blast GOLIATH $14.88
WALMART FurReal Cubby HASBRO $77.00
WALMART Nerf  N-Strike Elite Toy Blaster HASBRO $34.88
WALMART Nerf Rival Blaster Jupiter HASBRO $49.97
WALMART Sesame Street Love to Hug Elmo HASBRO $22.88
WALMART Spider-Man Super Web Slinger HASBRO $14.99
WALMART Hover -1 Maverick Hoverboard HOVER 1 114
WALMART Hover 1 Electric Scooter HOVER 1 $148.00
WALMART Hover-1 All Star & Go-Kart Combo HOVER 1 $198.00
WALMART HP Pavillion Gaming Laptop HP 749.99
WALMART Disney Frozen  Elsa's Enchanged Ice Interactive JAKKS $59.00
WALMART Disney Frozen 2 Ultimate Castle JAKKS $199.00
WALMART X-Treme Power Dozer JAKKS 49.97
WALMART Peppa Pig Magical Parade Float JAZWARES 34.82
WALMART PJ Masks PJ Seeker JUST PLAY $48.88
WALMART Barbie Cake Decorating Set MATTEL $23.88
WALMART Barbie Dream Plane Mattel $59.00
WALMART Fisher Price Bounce and Spin Intearctive Puppy MATTEL $54.00
WALMART Imaginext DC Super Friends Batmobile MATTEL $69.00
WALMART Recsue Heroes Fire Truck MATTEL $39.82
WALMART In Ur Head Whats In my Purse MGA $8.99
WALMART LOL Surprise 2 in 1 Glamper MGA $99.88
WALMART LOL Surprise OMG Lady Diva  MGA $54.88
WALMART LOL Surprise OMG Neonlicious Fashion Doll MGA $26.88
WALMART POOPSIE Rainbow Surprise Doll MGA 49.94
WALMART What's In My Purse Surprise Miss Pawsitive Doll MGA $19.94
WALMART What's In My Purse Surprise Pinkie Swear Doll MGA $36.99
WALMART Monster Jam MEGA Grave Digger MONSTER JAM $99.99
WALMART Kindi Kids Snack Time Friends  MOOSE $24.84
WALMART Pikmi Pops Cheeki Puffs MOOSE 9.78
WALMART Really Rad Robots MOOSE $43.88
WALMART Treasure X Alien Hunters MOOSE $12.93
WALMART Nintendo Swithc NINTENDO $294.49
WALMART Razer Cynosa Chroma Key Board RAZER $35.95
WALMART Razer Kraken Headphones RAZER $59.99
WALMART Cool Maker Nail Stamper SPIN MASTER $18.82
WALMART Dreamworks Harching Baby Dragon SPIN MASTER 48.88
WALMART Paw Patrol Mighty Pups SPIN MASTER $78.00
WALMART Wildluvs Jun My Baby Elecphant SPIN MASTER $77.00
WALMART Mix & March A Saurus V-Tech $29.82
WALMART V-Tech Unicorn V-TECH $48.82
WALMART Blinger Hair & Fashion Styling WICKED COOL TOYS $19.88
WALMART Harry Potter Invisibility Cloak WOWSTUFF $59.00


TARGET Extreme T-Rex Adventure Playset  Animal Planet $39.99
TARGET Classic Pinball Board Game  Buffalo Games $37.99
TARGET Ultimix Pack  Capsule Chix $49.99
TARGET Interactive Baby Doll  Cry Babies  $49.99
TARGET Burst  Turbo Championship Clash Battle Set  Hasbro $79.99
TARGET Avengers Titan Hero Series  Hasbro $9.99
TARGET Jumbo Loot Llama Piñata  JazWares $70.99
TARGET Strike Hoverboard  Jetson  $149.99
TARGET PJ Seeker  Just Play $59.99
TARGET RockIt Twist  LeapFrog $49.99
TARGET Barbie Malibu House  Mattel $99.99
TARGET Colossal Crash Track Set  Mattel $99.99
TARGET Linkimals Sloth Mattel $29.99
TARGET Pictionary Air  Mattel $19.99
TARGET Linkimals Musical Moose  Mattel $9.99
TARGET Linkimals A to Z Otter  Mattel $19.99
TARGET Linkimals Happy Shapes Hedgehog  Mattel $24.99
TARGET Linkimals Lights and Colors Llama  Mattel $14.99
TARGET Turbo Bot  Moose $49.99
TARGET Pink Scruff-a-Luvs Real Rescue  Moose $39.99
TARGET Nintendo Switch  Nintendo  $299.99
TARGET Movie Theater Playset  Our Generation $149.99
TARGET Rainbow Surprise Slime Kit  Poopsie Slime Surpise! $69.99
TARGET Mega Mystery Treasure Chest  Ryan's World $79.99
TARGET Echo's Debut on the Pink Carpet  Snapstar $24.99
TARGET Mega Grave Digger RC  Spin Master $99.99
TARGET Super Mighty Pups Lookout Tower  Spin Master $79.99
TARGET Go Glam Nail Nail Stamper Kit  Spin Master $24.99
TARGET Owleez  Spin Master  $49.99
TARGET Viro 2-in-1 Scooter  Viro Rides $299.99


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